Public Health

Articles, books, statistics, how to cite references, and more information about the multidisciplinary field of public health.

Find Journal Articles, News, Conference Papers, and More

Save your time! Use these search techniques:
  • Put quotation marks around PHRASES (two or more words), so that the words are searched together
    --- Example: "chicken pox"
  • Put an asterisk at the end of words, so that you get all of the word endings
    --- Example: high* = high, highs, higher, highest
  • Think of alternate spellings or synonyms
    --- Example: healthcare or "healthcare"; malfunction or failure
  • Start by putting your search words in the Title. If you get nothing, you can take them out of the Title and move them to "Anywhere."

Use background information to learn more about your topic, before getting to more specific information about it:

1) Encyclopedia of Public Health

2) Books -- Look in the library catalog (called "Catalyst") to find books about your topic

3) Medical information for consumers in

4) Go to PubMed and use MeSH (the excellent thesaurus) to get definitions

5) Also in PubMed, you can look for REVIEW ARTICLES:

  1. Do your search
  2. On the left, under "Article types," click "Review"

  3. CQ Researcher for background and summaries of topics -- Make sure to notice the dates
  4. Other Subject Databases of Interest (add "review" in your search in TITLE)
  • On the library home page: Articles and Databases --> DATABASES --> "Find a database by subject"
    Choose one of the subjects (e.g., Medicine, Sociology, Psychology, Political Science) and search in the databases under "Core"


Health Sciences Literature Review Made Easy: the Matrix Method
  • You are supposed to use the 6th edition (2020)
  • Unfortunately, this is not available in an acceptable online format -- the library ordered a print copy which will be on reserve as soon as it arrives
  • Ask for print reserve books at the Access Services desk on M-level of the Eisenhower Library (MSEL)


Writing Research Proposals in the Health Sciences: a Step-by-step Guide
  • Available as an ebook, with unlimited usage
  • You can get it in either of two ways:

1. Your Blackboard page -- click Ereserves on the left

2. The Ereserves website -- you'll be asked for JHED ID and password

Information about PubMed -- on the "PUBMED and EMBASE" page of this guide.

Also see the PubMed tutorials on the Welch Library YouTube channel.






Finding Information about Everything

Use journal articles to get:

  • a narrow or specific part of your topic
  • up-to-date information

1. Library home page --> Databases

2.  Click "Browse list of databases"

Library home page, databases link


3. Choose a subject to see the databases with information about it.


4. In each list, start with the databases under CORE -- they are the best and most relevant 

  • For a description about the database's topics, click "More Info" next to the database name

What journal articles are the most used? Which ones have been cited the most often?

Three databases now tell you the answer. (Remember that newer articles will not have had time to be cited by other authors.)

  1. Web of Science -- sort by "times cited"
  2. Scopus -- sort by "cited by (highest)" 
  3. Google Scholar -- tells you how many times each article has been cited, but you can't sort by that

NOTE: Google Scholar's number will always be wrong. It will be too high, because Scholar adds things that are not appropriate, such as lecture notes and Powerpoint slides.

How To Cite Sources
  • The library's Citing guide gives information about the three main reference styles and some others

  • You must use AMA (American Medical Association). You will be using the 11th edition (2019), which is the most recent:

  • NOTE:  The Citing Sources --> More Styles --> AMA tab tells you that for in-text citations, AMA style uses numbers in the text, and the bibliography listed in the order that the references were used.
    --- To make sure that you don't lose track of which reference goes with which number, Sue suggests that you use "author/date" throughout the paper. The very last thing to do you do is to change author/date into numbers, and create your bibliography in the order used.

For Writing Help

More about Literature Reviews (on this page of this guide)



RefWorks is the citation manager that is supported by JHU. It is free for you.

Citation managers let you:

  • export citations FROM databases INTO the manager
  • add the full text if you wish
  • put your citations into "Projects," folders, subfolders, and use tags
  • print out a bibliography in whatever style you want
Use the NEW RefWorks! Log in here.
  • Here are video tutorials about the NEW RefWorks
  • NEVER search from within RefWorks; always search from within the database itself

Simple example of using folders to help you organize your paper ("My Great Idea"). The three dots in yellow is where you find "rename," "subfolder," etc.